Taskmaster star Greg Davies demands two-season orders to be new rule for future series - amid constant BBC cost-cutting

Taskmaster star Greg Davies demands two-season orders to be new rule for future series - amid constant BBC cost-cutting

GB News is forcing BBC and rivals to change and Britons WANT to help

Lauren Williams

By Lauren Williams

Published: 23/02/2024

- 21:51

A flurry of BBC shows have been canned in recent months due to strict cost-cutting plans

Greg Davies has outlined what he thinks is the way forward for new comedy series – but it seems to clash with the BBC’s current money pot plans.

Davies, who fronts the hit series Taskmaster and writes and stars in the sitcom The Cleaner, has opened up about what he would change within the world of comedy.

During a session of the Berlinale Series Market, he revealed he would appreciate seeing new comedies given more time to hit their stride – noting that a classic like Seinfeld needed multiple seasons to establish itself.

Delivering his opinion with a hint of humour, he said: “I think that people should commission things for at least two seasons. The amount of classic comedies that only found themselves in season two [is significant].

“If you go to America, and you look at Seinfeld, one of the greatest sitcoms of all time, it wasn’t until season four that people realised how great that was. That is what I would change: It should be a mandatory two seasons.”

His point seemed to have struck a chord with the audience as they applauded his call for a double-season order.

Greg Davies

Greg Davies has called for a two-series order for future comedy series


The comedian’s comments come after BBC News and Current Affairs CEO Deborah Turness said the BBC was "in a tough financial climate".

She explained in December 2023, the broadcaster had to make “some difficult decisions” as audiences began to ditch traditional TV watching for online streaming.

In a statement via the BBC, she said: "When we started work on this announcement, I did not know if it would make financial sense to keep Newsnight on air.

"We, like many other news organisations, have streamlined our editorial teams to avoid duplication. It simply no longer makes sense to keep a bespoke reporting team dedicated to a single news programme with a small and declining audience, however good that programme is."

Greg Davies

Greg Davies writes and stars in The Cleaner


Over the last year, shows such as Unbeatable, Doctors, Newsnight and many more shows have been axed from the schedule.

Culture secretary Lucy Frazer told BBC Radio 4’s Today show that the government were set to announced the new level of the license fee.

She explained in December 2023: “The government and BBC agreed a six-year license fee settlement in January 2022, which froze the license fee for two years with increases in line with inflation from 2024.

“As is usual practice the government sets and confirms the cost of a license each year and this remains unconfirmed for 2024/25.

Greg Davies

Greg Davies has demanded a new order


“The BBC will continue to focus on what it does best: working to deliver world-class content and providing great value for all audiences.”

During his talk, Davies also said he would like to see comedy on TV moving beyond whatever is the latest trend.

“Often you’ll see a certain type of comedy being favored and I think there’s room for all types of comedy and all genres of comedy. Allowing original creators to bring forward an original idea is the way forward.”

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